Monday, November 23, 2020 ‒ The Strategic Forum on construction and infrastructure held as part of the Relaunch MTL movement, powered by the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal and its partners, was a chance for almost 450 participants to interact with close to 25 panelists about business opportunities generated by government relaunch plans.
During this event, many strategic partners of the construction and infrastructure industry identified major challenges exacerbated by the pandemic. The issue of labour, already in serious shortage before the pandemic, continues to be the most worrisome one for the industry, which is also concerned about the impact of the crisis on the vitality of downtown and the acceleration of urban sprawl. The slowdown in investment and increased uncertainty in the real estate market – mainly in the commercial sector – are among the industry’s main concerns.
Participants were able to identify priority efforts for this strategic sector to stimulate the economic recovery. Among avenues for action for governments and industry, the most promising relate to the environmental impact of the industry, inclusion, and training and new technologies. In fact, participants recommended integrating sustainable practices that meet the criteria of profitability and environmental impact. They also recommended working with schools to ensure training reflects the skills required for the new realities of the industry.
The prioritization of solutions initially presented in the Action Plan to Strengthen the Construction and Infrastructure Sector, jointly developed Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal and the Association de la construction du Québec, with content partner, KPMG, is the result of an exercise conducted during the Forum. The action plan also mentioned the importance of the sector’s contribution to the GDP of Montréal and Quebec, as well as business opportunities generated by infrastructure relaunch plans from different levels of government.
“Members of the construction and infrastructure industry mobilized for the relaunch of a strategically important sector,” said Michel Leblanc, president and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal. “This morning we saw that the most fundamental issue for the industry, now and particularly in the future, is labour. We need to ensure that there is training for new and existing labour, facilitate the integration of new technologies, and increase productivity. We also saw that downtown remains a focal point that must not go into a spiral of devitalization and that the sustainable construction issues of a circular economy are increasingly central to business concerns. Finally, a great deal of importance was placed on terms of payment. We need to settle this matter quickly to avoid aggravating cash flow problems among businesses. This is an important issue the Chamber will be looking into.”
“The pandemic is having devastating effects on the economy of Greater Montréal, and the construction industry has not been spared,” said Luc Bourgoin, CEO of the Association de la construction du Québec (ACQ). “More than ever, it is crucial that all industry actors consult one another and work together to find concrete solutions and innovate by starting a technological shift that we have long been waiting for. Government interest in the economic relaunch through public investment in infrastructures shows confidence in the industry, and we are here to contribute to that recovery.”
The enhanced action plan, following a collaborative session held as part of the Forum, will soon be available on the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal website. While awaiting the updated version, you can find the action plan here.
About the Strategic Forum on construction and infrastructure
The Strategic Forum on construction and infrastructure, which is part of the Relaunch MTL movement, is jointly developed by the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal and the Association de la construction du Québec, in cooperation with the Association des constructeurs de routes et grands travaux du Québec, Pomerleau and VIA Rail.
About the Relaunch MTL movement
The Relaunch MTL movement is powered by the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal, the Government of Canada, the Government of Québec, the Communauté métropolitaine de Montréal and the Ville de Montréal, in association with Investissement Québec and the Palais des congrès de Montréal, and in cooperation with the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, the Conseil emploi métropole, CN, the Fonds de solidarité FTQ and KPMG. The movement is also created with the support of Air Canada, CGI, Desjardins, Hydro-Québec, La Presse, Montreal Gazette, RBC Royal Bank and Rio Tinto, and in partnership with Aéro Montréal, AluQuébec, the Association de la construction du Québec, the Quebec Film and Television Council, CargoM – Logistic and Transportation Metropolitan Cluster of Montréal, the Conseil québécois du commerce de détail, Culture Montréal, Écotech Québec, Femmessor, Finance Montréal, the Fonds de recherche du Québec, the Guilde du jeu vidéo du Québec, the Junior Chamber of Commerce of Montreal, mmode – the Metropolitan Fashion Cluster, Montréal International, Montreal InVivo, Numana, Propulsion Québec and Tourisme Montréal. More details on the movement at www.relaunchMTL.ca.
About the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal
With a network of over 8,000 members, the CCMM is active on two fronts: being the voice of the Montréal business community and delivering specialized services to businesses and their representatives. With its finger on the pulse of current events, it acts on issues that are decisive for the prosperity of the city’s businesses. With the support of the Acclr experts, the CCMM’s goal is to accelerate the creation and growth of businesses of all sizes, at home and around the world.
To continue the discussion: #RelançonsMTL
Source: Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal
Information: Caroline Des Rosiers, 514 880-2881, firstname.lastname@example.org